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Goodyear reinvents the wheel: the world's first tyre using extracts of corn

BioTRED is a new technology that sets a benchmark for future environmentally friendly tyre design.

With BioTRED, Goodyear have developed a technology which allows the environmentally-friendly replacement of traditional chemical compounds in tyres by an organic derivative from maize plants. The new Goodyear GT3 is the first tyre to use BioTRED technology and also offers significant improvements in fuel economy, performance and safety.

Environmentally friendly technology benefits from renewable sources:

BioTRED uses an organic compound, derived from corn starch, as a polymer filler* within the construction of the tyre. The filler has been conceived as an eco-friendly replacement for traditional compound reinforcements like silica and carbon black. The maize starch derivative used in the tyre is extracted from corn through a process similar to that used in the food industry. It is then transformed into micro-droplets which undergo a special treatment to turn them into a biopolymeric filler. Thus the filler replaces a part of the silica and carbon black. Due to its organic origin, BioTRED is a readily renewable resource which is a major step in the right direction for the environment.

A milestone in modern tyre construction:

Fuel Economy

The new Goodyear GT3 summer tyre is the first tyre on the market to use BioTRED technology. Its use has resulted in a reduction in rolling resistance of about 20 percent, as well as a decrease in the weight of the tyre itself. Combined, these features lead to a significant improvement in fuel consumption. Tests have shown a decrease in fuel consumption of up to 5% (compared to GT2). This means that after 40,000 kilometres, the driver of a car equipped with GT3 tyres will already have saved the equivalent of two new tyres.

Better for the environment

BioTRED technology has a range of characteristics which are beneficial to the environment. First and foremost, the technology permits the innovative use of maize as a renewable resource. Its application in the GT3 has the noteworthy effect of decreasing CO2 emissions by 7.7g/km, compared to the GT2. The reduction of CO2 emission is a combination of 0.2g/km saved in the production process of the filler and 7.5g/km as a result of lower rolling resistance. This amount is equivalent to 17% of the final reduction objective for CO2 emissions set by the European Commission for car manufacturers, to be reached by 2008. A further benefit is a contribution to a reduction of noise levels by some 50% - another bonus for the environment.

GT3 - the first BioTRED tyre

As well as the new BioTRED compound, the GT3 also features Goodyear's 3D-BIS (3 Dimensional Block Interlocking System) tread technology to increase blade stiffness for better tyre grip without compromising the handling stability. This combination of features has generated a range of results which highlight the increased performance of the tyre. Aquaplaning and wet braking have improved by 5 and 10 percent respectively.

The first use of BioTRED technology in the new GT3 tyre is a genuine milestone in modern tyre development. This new patented technology marks the beginning of a new era in the history of tyres, and a new respect for the environment.

Goodyear is the world's largest tyre company. Headquartered in Akron, Ohio, the company manufactures tyres, engineered rubber products and chemicals in more than 90 facilities in 28 countries. It has marketing operations in almost every country around the world. Goodyear employs more than 100,000 people worldwide.

The new Goodyear GT3 BioTRED tyre is now available throughout Europe.

Notes to Editors

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* A filler is a solid particle used as an additive for polymers in order to reinforce the compound and to optimise their properties. The filler can be a mineral, a metal powder, an organic by-product or an inorganic synthetic compound depending on the required applications. The most common reinforcing filler in the tyre industry has traditionally been carbon black, which besides its physical role has also given tyres their deep black colour. In the nineties, silica was introduced as an alternative to carbon black, and achieved substantial improvements in tyre performance. The biopolymeric filler used in BioTRED represents the third generation of fillers for tyres.

Features and benefits of BioTRED and the GT3:

  Feature                              Benefit
 BioTRED technology in general
 Unique BioTRED compound technology      Less rolling resistance
                                         Reduced fuel consumption
                                         Reduced CO2 emissions
                                         Improved wet performance
 GT3 tyre with BioTRED technology
 3D-BIS technology in centre blocks
                                          Improved steady grip and steering
                                          capability; better handling on wet
                                          and dry roads
 Circumferential grooves                  Better performance in the wet;
                                           reduced aquaplaning
 Shoulder block tie bars                  Improved handling; uniform wear
 Narrow radical grooves & optimised
 Shift/4 pitch sequence                   Improves comfort through minimised
                                           noise levels

SOURCE Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company

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